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cabalistic

The Dark Mod VR 2.09 alpha is now available :)

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19 hours ago, cabalistic said:

Alpha 4 is available: https://github.com/fholger/thedarkmodvr/releases/tag/v2.0.9_alpha4

It fixes a regression that broke light/shadows and the lightgem visibility in many places, so it's kind of an important update :D It also features a few quality-of-life improvements, and a working compass.

Awesome, I'm excited to try out all the new changes. Will see if I have a chance to give it a run this evening. I think you're right that it would be great to have a short list of "recommended" or "vetted" FMs to provide to the end user that have good performance and flow well in VR. Might require playing a few different missions, but that's hardly a chore :)


My Fan Missions:

   Series:                                                                           Standalone:

Chronicles of Skulduggery 1: Pearls and Swine                     The Night of Reluctant Benefaction

Chronicles of Skulduggery 2: A Precarious Position              Langhorne Lodge

Chronicles of Skulduggery 3: Sacricide

 

 

 

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Yeah, except as a developer, I don't really have time to do it, because there's always something that needs to be fixed or implemented :D So any mission recommendations that you guys can give for VR would be very welcome :)

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Alpha 5 is out: https://github.com/fholger/thedarkmodvr/releases/tag/v2.0.9_alpha5

A few minor bugfixes, and I finally found time to add a basic comfort vignette, if anyone needs it. The vignette (and other stuff) can be enabled and configured via cvars, which are described here: https://github.com/fholger/thedarkmodvr/wiki/Advanced-settings

I also made the spyglass work in a way by forcing it to render in 2D to the UI overlay. Not the most amazing/immersive solution, but at least this way it functions.

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I didn't try the comfort vignette yet, but the spyglass works well. It's a little weird that it switches to 2d but it's still pretty believable. I'm also really digging this new mouse focus mode, it provides a lot of dexterity (honestly more than in standard TDM!) and it feels natural after playing with it for a few minutes. The compass works great, though it seems to follow the white focus dot instead of the actual direction the player is facing, wiggling the dot around without turning makes the compass wiggle, but that's a very minor thing. I haven't had any readable problems (although sometimes there seems to be a highly transparent black square surrounding the readable). I also have not seen any more weird shadows or lights looking different in each eye. You've really squashed most of the problematic bugs now! Great job!!

I feel like maybe performance is slightly lower than in earlier builds though, as I ran into a little bit more reprojection than before. Rain seems pretty taxing (Langhorne Lodge seemed to run fine anyway, though I noticed my fps dip down to low 40's in the outdoor scenes). Played a bit of CoS 1: Pearls and Swine tonight and got some reprojection in scenes with multiple lights, but nothing too terrible. Going to finish it tomorrow evening. Not sure if I dare try to play The Painter's Wife for performance fears, but I guess I should try it as well to see how it fares.

Again amazing work, I think it's ready for a wider audience!

 

edit: Forgot to mention that it seemed to me like the lightgem is just a hair brighter in the VR version? While playing CoS 1 I noticed the AI giving first alerts in places I know for sure I never got them in standard TDM. Unless that is a 2.08/2.09 issue, I only played the map in 2.07 before.

Edited by Bienie

My Fan Missions:

   Series:                                                                           Standalone:

Chronicles of Skulduggery 1: Pearls and Swine                     The Night of Reluctant Benefaction

Chronicles of Skulduggery 2: A Precarious Position              Langhorne Lodge

Chronicles of Skulduggery 3: Sacricide

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, Bienie said:

I feel like maybe performance is slightly lower than in earlier builds though, as I ran into a little bit more reprojection than before. Rain seems pretty taxing (Langhorne Lodge seemed to run fine anyway, though I noticed my fps dip down to low 40's in the outdoor scenes). Played a bit of CoS 1: Pearls and Swine tonight and got some reprojection in scenes with multiple lights, but nothing too terrible. Going to finish it tomorrow evening. Not sure if I dare try to play The Painter's Wife for performance fears, but I guess I should try it as well to see how it fares.

So, out of curiosity I installed TDM 2.05 - which is dead simple with stgatilov's new tdm installer, btw. Holy shit, was that first VR alpha bad. Hard to believe I ever released it in that state :D As far as performance goes, it's a bit of an interesting picture.

The new builds win leaps and bounds when it comes to CPU performance - that is not surprising to me, as I've invested a lot of effort in that regard. CPU performance in the old builds does cause quite a bit of reprojection in certain scenes e.g. in "A new job", whereas with the new builds I can go through the entire mission without reprojection.

However, GPU performance may have deteriorated somewhat. The old builds don't have the profiling tools of the newer ones, so it's difficult to pinpoint what's going on. But looking at SteamVR's frame graph, the GPU is spiking a bit more in the newer build. The baseline looks very similar to 2.05, but every third or fourth frame GPU time spikes, and as a consequence there may be less GPU headroom. Which, consequentially, could cause more reprojection in GPU-heavy scenes, as scenes with many lights potentially are. I think this is probably a "regression" in the base game, but definitely worth looking into. Although, it isn't really a big difference, and I also need to point out that the comparison is a little unfair, as the old build does have some graphical glitches.

Also, I have briefly tried The Painter's Wife, and as you would expect, it is not a smooth ride throughout. The open city parts are prone to reprojection - there's just too many lights at once. It wasn't outright bad, though. Might still be very playable, depending on your tolerance for reprojection.

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18 hours ago, Bienie said:

edit: Forgot to mention that it seemed to me like the lightgem is just a hair brighter in the VR version? While playing CoS 1 I noticed the AI giving first alerts in places I know for sure I never got them in standard TDM. Unless that is a 2.08/2.09 issue, I only played the map in 2.07 before.

It's difficult to say. If you have a specific place in the map in mind (ideally coordinates with getviewpos), I can check it out. I just played through Tears of St. Lucia in VR, and the lightgem seemed alright. Doesn't mean that there might not be a few instances where I messed something up, though :)

It might also help to recalibrate your seated position. If it's not properly calibrated, your actual player avatar might be in a slightly different position than you think, which could also explain some lightgem value differences.

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I just tried this, streaming it wireless to a Quest via virtual desktop. 

It worked great, and while I do miss the soft shadows and ambient occlusion, I didn't really have any performance issues in either Mission 1 or the first Penny Dreadful FM. 

Congratulations on the work - even this early it's very much playable. Going forward, even without full touch controls I think bindings for touch controllers would make sense, and, eventually, it'd be cool to see some of the persistent UI(light gem, compass) maybe reworked into your off-hand model. I'd also suggest at least an option to decouple aiming (both frob and weapons) from the view. There's a Quake2 VR port that optionally does that while remaining mouse/kb driven, and I found that to work very well.

Even in this early state, though, inhabiting the City in VR feels great. I would definitely play missions this way.

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13 hours ago, cabalistic said:

It's difficult to say. If you have a specific place in the map in mind (ideally coordinates with getviewpos), I can check it out. I just played through Tears of St. Lucia in VR, and the lightgem seemed alright. Doesn't mean that there might not be a few instances where I messed something up, though :)

It might also help to recalibrate your seated position. If it's not properly calibrated, your actual player avatar might be in a slightly different position than you think, which could also explain some lightgem value differences.

Ok, I will look into it further. If the problem persists when I reset the seating position, and it doesn't also happen in 2.08 standard I'll try and get you some co-ordinates to the specific spot where I realized it.


My Fan Missions:

   Series:                                                                           Standalone:

Chronicles of Skulduggery 1: Pearls and Swine                     The Night of Reluctant Benefaction

Chronicles of Skulduggery 2: A Precarious Position              Langhorne Lodge

Chronicles of Skulduggery 3: Sacricide

 

 

 

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18 minutes ago, kerrle said:

I just tried this, streaming it wireless to a Quest via virtual desktop. 

It worked great, and while I do miss the soft shadows and ambient occlusion, I didn't really have any performance issues in either Mission 1 or the first Penny Dreadful FM. 

Congratulations on the work - even this early it's very much playable. Going forward, even without full touch controls I think bindings for touch controllers would make sense, and, eventually, it'd be cool to see some of the persistent UI(light gem, compass) maybe reworked into your off-hand model. I'd also suggest at least an option to decouple aiming (both frob and weapons) from the view. There's a Quake2 VR port that optionally does that while remaining mouse/kb driven, and I found that to work very well.

Even in this early state, though, inhabiting the City in VR feels great. I would definitely play missions this way.

Haha yeah, soft shadows, I'm afraid, would need an improved implementation of shadow mapping to become viable in VR (soft stencil will just never reach the necessary performance). And while that would be an interesting technical challenge, I think right now there are other things to spend my time on that would improve the VR port more. Ambient occlusion, though, isn't actually as big a deal in VR, interestingly. The thing is, I think a major part of its appeal in the flat game is that it helps improve the depth perception. But you already have plenty of that in VR. So while it does add some nice shading to the environment, it just doesn't have the same wow factor in VR - at least that was my experience when I did enable it.

Right now, I'm basically monitoring feedback and bug reports to try and get the experience as smooth as possible. I'll also try and see if I can improve the performance a little more so that there might be a little more headroom for at least 2x anti-aliasing, which would already be an improvement. But then motion controllers are in fact the next major item on my todo list. It will go through several stages, first steps will be very primitive and basically work more like a traditional gamepad. Eventually they will control the actual hands and weapons, and yeah, putting the lightgem on the hand model is an idea I also had - however, that all depends on whether I can find someone who can help me with the models for that. I'm just a coder :D

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Very cool. I somehow missed this post, but thankfully someone posted it on reddit. Looking forward to playing it. Thanks for all the work on this!

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I just played about an hour of Perilous Refuge in VR. It's working great, I cleaned out most of the town and am about to head to the ship. 

It looks really good! No problems or bugs with the VR implementation so far that I noticed. I didn't see any weird lighting artifacts or double images, etc.  The world scale feels properly dialed in, which I'm really fussy about - great job.

The WSAD movement works just fine, but the mouse rotation dead-zone felt a bit strange at first (I think I'd prefer all or nothing). It would be interesting to try it with no mouse rotation at all and just use the mouse for aiming/selecting. You could then use the Q and E for snap turning 45° (the lean keys aren't needed since you can just lean irl anyway). That might be be a good option as a "comfort setting" for people that get nausea from smooth turning (although I was fine).

Anyway, even with no further changes, it's very enjoyable as is and I'm excited to continue playing the missions in VR from now on (assuming other maps work as well as this one). Thanks a lot!

Edited by grodenglaive
fixed mission name

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Glad you're enjoying it!

You can actually disable the deadzone by setting the cvar vr_decoupledMouseYawAngle to 0. You can also fully extend it to 180 degrees, I think - although without currently any other method to rotate the view, I don't think that would be playable :)

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Alpha 6 is out: https://github.com/fholger/thedarkmodvr/releases/tag/v2.0.9_alpha6

It contains some minor improvements to culling with experimental support for non-parallel projections for canted displays (Index, Pimax). And I added experimental gamepad support, which some of you may prefer over keyboard/mouse until tracked controller support arrives :)

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Nice, this fixed needing parallel projections for the Pimax (5k+). I tested it out in the creepy Langhorne Lodge. Xbox 360 controller works to move around and to select the start menu items, but I wasn't able to map any of the buttons. Do I need to use a 3rd party app like Xpadder?  

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5 hours ago, grodenglaive said:

Nice, this fixed needing parallel projections for the Pimax (5k+). I tested it out in the creepy Langhorne Lodge. Xbox 360 controller works to move around and to select the start menu items, but I wasn't able to map any of the buttons. Do I need to use a 3rd party app like Xpadder?  

No, just follow the instructions here: https://github.com/fholger/thedarkmodvr/wiki/Gamepad-support

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FYI, I have a few other things I need to take care of at the moment, so development may slow down a little.

But so that you know what to expect, this is what I intent to work on next:

  • Further performance experiments. I specifically want to try and implement fixed foveated rendering. The most notorious performance offender at the moment is a rasterization/fillrate limit due to stencil shadowing. With fixed foveated rendering I could reduce the pixel density at the outer regions, which should help significantly in those cases at a negligible quality decrease. It will, however, increase geometry processing costs, so I'll still need to do the experiment and see if and how much it actually saves in practice. On Nvidia cards, I can probably eliminate the extra geometry cost and even reduce it below what it currently is due to their support for the multiview extensions. Existing AMD cards, however, are SOL on that front...
  • After that, I will slowly move towards motion controls and room-scale tracking. Not all at once, obviously, and it'll probably take a few alpha versions before it's really playable that way, but at least it'll get going in the right direction :) Unfortunately, since SteamVR's OpenXR support is not quite ready, yet, I will have to focus on the OpenVR backend, first. So initially only the OpenVR backend will feature controller support and roomscale, and only once I got that to a certain point I'll backport it to OpenXR.

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